Discipleship is the process where we embrace a new and better way to live – where we learn to focus who we are on loving God and displaying the values of His Kingdom to others. It is an ongoing and ever-developing relationship with God more than a destination to be found. Taking this journey together is the essence of what it means to be a church.
Although discipleship at its core cannot be fully captured by a finite set of steps, we believe that a helpful way to think about it is an inward, outward, and together journey. In this post, my hope is to provide a framework for us to follow on our inward journey – fostering a personal and intimate relationship with God.
As always, one of my main roles in the church is to support, assist, and encourage you in knowing and following Jesus. I would be more than happy to meet with you if doing so will help you to better develop a rhythm of discipleship in your life!
Serving with you,
A Framework for the Inward Journey :: Spiritual Disciplines
Engage in scripture reading for at least 15 minutes, 5 out of 7 days each week.
The Bible was inspired and preserved by God for our benefit. By reading the Bible, we can grow to know God’s heart and understand who we are, how we are to live, and what we are to value. There are many strategies for reading the Bible. A few strategies you may find helpful are linked below.
Engage in meditative prayer for at least 15 minutes, 5 out of 7 days each week.
Find a quiet place free from distractions where you can fully focus on the Lord. As you start your prayer, sit quietly with your eyes shut for a few moments becoming aware of God’s presence. Express to the Lord what you are grateful for and then ask for Him to bring more things to your mind for you to show gratitude. Confess any behaviors or attitudes in your heart not in line with His Kingdom and then ask Him where else you may be struggling and unaware. Pray specifically for other people, allowing God to bring people to your attention in need of prayer. Pray for the things weighing heavy on your heart within your own life, asking God to intervene. At the conclusion of your time in prayer, spend time silently listening, asking God to affirm His love for you and to communicate anything else He so chooses. Thank God for the grace He has poured out on you during your time of listening whether you perceived it or not.
Engage in reflective journaling at least once a month.
Write about common themes that are surfacing in your discipleship journey over the past month. This could be in the form of multiple paragraphs or even just a few sentences – giving yourself a roadmap to see what God has been doing in your life over time. Include scripture that has been influencing you, reoccurring prayers, or significant moments in your daily life that have been sticking with you. Reread the past few journal entries, asking God to give you a bigger picture of what He is currently doing in your life. As you engage in prayer for the following month, incorporate your findings while journaling into your time of prayer each day.
Engage in a spiritual retreat with the Lord for at least 6 hours twice a year.
Take a private and extended time of scripture reading, prayer, and journaling in a setting where you can be undisturbed – a “sacred space”. Use this time to further explore major themes in your life that you have been noticing over the last 6 months.